As is customary before a PPV, AEW aired a special episode of AEW Dark tonight which was recorded before Rampage last night in the NOW arena in Chicago, Illinois. We're just 24 hours away from All Out and this card has 11 matches so lets get straight to what happened!
Ricky Starks joins Taz & Excalibur in the booth for this match. 2point0 take contol of this match early on and never give it up. They hit the Sweet Taste followed by the two for the show on Hunter Knott for the win. After the match, Garcia joins the winners in the ring and all three men proceed to beat down Knott and Grillo.
Really short one here as Nyla and Vickie hype up the possibility of her winning the Casino Battle Royale tomorrow. I don't think that's going to happen but you can never rule out Nyla in a battle royale.
.@NylaRoseBeast won the 2019 Casino Battle Royale and plans to win it again this Sunday at #AEWAllOut LIVE on PPV to earn an #AEW Women’s World Title shot.— All Elite Wrestling (@AEW) September 4, 2021
Watch a special Saturday #AEWDark NOW: https://t.co/ljLGbpUlno pic.twitter.com/4CrDZVKZoa
Wheeler Yuta has a lot of potential and his fundamentals get better every time we see him. He picks up the win here with the Seatbelt after a quick back and forth match with Baron Black. That surprise roll up finisher looked really impressive.
This match was very very messy early on but that's to be expected sometimes when you have two green performers in the ring together. They manage to pull it back in a little bit in the middle but Julia ends up looking like she hurts herself towards the end of the match. Hope she's okay but this one was one to forget.
Moderated by Tony Schiavone, this one is just a different way to put a microphone in front of Jon Moxley which I approve of. Schiavone welcomes Kojima to America and then asks Moxley about the forbidden door. Mox say's he walks through any door he wants and he is the forbidden door. He said from day one in NJPW that he's big game hunting in New Japan and there's no game bigger than a former IWGP champion. He says the difference this time though is Kojima is the one that's hunting him. He makes a brief comment alluding to Tanahashi ducking him and jumping back on a plane to Japan even though he was in LA last week but then he turns his attention back to his opponent. He says he has respect for Kojima until the bell rings on Sunday but after that, he'll end Kojima's career if he has to.
Kojima gets a chance to respond but his broken English means Moxley has to improvise. When told that he's going to get his ass kicked, Mox suddenly changes his tone and flips the table on him before security have to intervene and this is a perfect example of why nobody can sell a match like Jon Moxley.
Things got violent between @JonMoxley and #SatoshiKojima (@cozy_lariat) during their press conference last night. It’s going to be a WAR when they meet at #AEWAllOut tomorrow LIVE on PPV!— All Elite Wrestling (@AEW) September 4, 2021
Watch a special Saturday #AEWDark NOW: https://t.co/ljLGbpCJYO pic.twitter.com/JaK1RS5GPe
Julia starts off by telling us that she's going to be in the Casino Battle Royale but that lasts all of 2 seconds as a huge boot comes out of nowhere to take her out. In to frame walk the owner of the boot, Jade Cargill, and Nyla Rose who hits her with a chair and then puts it over Julia's leg and stamps on it with Jade to presumably put that knee injury into storyline and take Julia out of the match tomorrow. Nyla and Jade go face to face after they're done with their prey before they tell each other that tomorrow, the truce is off.
BREAKING: #AEW doctors won’t clear @TheJuliaHart to compete in tomorrow's Casino Battle Royale due to the injuries from this attack by @NylaRoseBeast and @Jade_Cargill earlier on #AEWDark. pic.twitter.com/AwJMFzCNX6— All Elite Wrestling (@AEW) September 4, 2021
Hikaru Shida continues to act a lot more like a heel than she had done as champion here as she takes her opponent lightly on more than one occasion in this match and has to kick out of a pin from this local talent we haven't seen before. Shida eventually puts her away with the Falcon Arrow but I think she's heading towards a turn sooner or later.
If you've been looking on social media, you know that after this match, Illinois local Skye Blue was added to the Casino Battle Royale, presumably as Julia Hart's replacement. This match starts off with some nice back and forth mat wrestling but the crowd loves Skye Blue so cheers her every single time she appears to have the advantage. Red Velvet plays up to the crowd treating her like a heel though which was really quick thinking for the natural babyface. Skye looks really impressive and gets a lot of offence in and this might end up being he big break. Velvet eventually picks up the win with the Final Slice but this one was a really good watch. We see Tony Khan adding Skye Blue to the Battle Royale after the promo which was next.
These two have formed a partnership to help them win the Battle Royale but I can't see either of these women winning and I think one eliminating the other is much more likely.
A dangerous alliance formed between #TheBunny and @ThePenelopeFord might give them the advantage in tomorrow’s Casino Battle Royale at #AEWAllOut LIVE on PPV!— All Elite Wrestling (@AEW) September 4, 2021
Watch a special Saturday #AEWDark NOW: https://t.co/ljLGbpUlno pic.twitter.com/gwv38aId1B
Shawn Spears starts off this one against Brandon Gore and ends up getting isolated by him and JDX before he manages to turn the tide with a left hand which sends Gore to the outside where Tully can attack him when the referee wasn't looking. Gore comes back in an that's when Wardlow comes in and wrecks both men with absolute ease. He hits the Casualty of War and then tags Spears in to get the pin with such a lackadaisical pin.
The commentary team talk about Dark Orders struggles and I still can't tell you how much I will hate it if they split up. Anna needs to fix it now she's back. The team of Silver and 10 is one muscular team and they make little work of their opponents as Silver hits the Spin Doctor on Zachariah before 10 defeats him with the Full Nelson.
Penelope comes down to the ring with her new partner The Bunny for this one and I must say, I prefer that combination to Penelope and Kip! Ford gets the upper hand early in this one and even with that advantage, The Bunny still gets involved when the referee isn't looking. Queen Aminata never gets a chance to get anything in this match as Penelope locks on the Indian Death Lock to pick up the submission victory.
Mark does most of the speaking in this one. He basically says that Jade is going to win the battle royale because she's that bitch and she has to be considered one of the favourites for sure!
Frankie was really hot before his loss to Doc Gallows on Dynamite a few weeks back and I really think that result was a mistake because you could have easily got a TV defence for Omega out of Kazarian. The Elite Hunter goes back and forth with Dean Alexander early on but you can't keep Kaz down as he keeps coming back with that explosive offence and he manages to get the win with the Cross Face Chicken Wing.
Blair Onyx only lasted 58 seconds in her last match when she lost to Leyla Hirsch and I can't see this one lasting much longer before the bell rings. In fact Cargill beat Leylas record as she finishes it with the Jaded.
Thunder Rosa calls out Nyla and Jade for attacking her backstage and says that she's the one that's going to win the Battle Royale and beat Britt Baker. Anyone else love it when Rosa speaks spanish? Just me?
.@thunderrosa22 is NOT intimidated after @NylaRoseBeast & @Jade_Cargill attacked her on Dynamite. Rosa is determined to win the Casino Battle Royale tomorrow at #AEWAllOut and become the #1 contender for the #AEW Women’s World Championship. pic.twitter.com/PksYvluAqN— All Elite Wrestling (@AEW) September 4, 2021
I would genuinely pay for a Taz - Tarzan Boy single as he once again bursts into song as Jurassic Express make their entrance before this main event. Jungle Boy starts of in the ring against Serpentico and JB takes advantage until Luther tags in. The referee keeps getting distracted so Luther has plenty of time to pick up his partner and use him as a weapon. Jungle Boy may well be one of the best sellers in the company alongside Darby Allin as he gets beaten down by Chaos project for a while but he does eventually manage to get the hot tag to Luchasaurus and the big man runs wild. Eventually the Thoracic Express double team gets the job done to give Jurassic Express the win.
Just as the show is about to end, we get a familiar sound as Cult of Personality hits the speakers and CM Punk comes down to the ring, microphone in hand. He then steals Taz's gimmick and gets the crowd singing Tarzan Boy. He thanks the crowd for being so into the show. He says that he's been tasked with sending the crowd home happy and he goes around individually thanking everyone before he starts to sing the Golden Girls theme song. He then clarifies his STFU comments from last week and gets a STFU crowd. He then teases a Jungle Boy match being in his future. He has so much charisma. Once again, welcome back CM Punk!
A great way to end a special Saturday #AEWDark - @CMPunk standing in the ring with @boy_myth_legend, @luchasaurus & @realmarkostunt of #JurassicExpress - complete with a little karaoke!— All Elite Wrestling (@AEW) September 5, 2021
See CM Punk's return to the ring against @DarbyAllin TOMORROW at #AEWAllOut LIVE on PPV! pic.twitter.com/76XfyiXUKL
Follow me at @0r4n93_C4551dy on twitter and I'll see you back here tomorrow for AEW All Out! Peace!